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RE - Pilgrim's progress

Children from P4-7 will be given the opportunity to experience life as a pilgrim, thanks to a new activity launched by Historic Scotland specifically for Dunfermline Abbey.

The pilot will enable children to understand religious beliefs and practices in medieval times, compare medieval and modern-day pilgrimage, and learn about the abbey's place in Scottish history.

Cross-curricular in scope, the event supports the study of social sciences and religious and moral education. It also provides a platform for pupils to go on and explore how pilgrimages form part of other religions that are still widely practised today.

During a range of activities, the children will carry sand as an act of penance, have a tour of the abbey with the abbot, learn where food was cooked and served, and sample some pilgrims' fare. They will also discover the architectural features of abbeys and the purposes of different areas.

Fiona Davidson, education officer at Historic Scotland, said: "Dunfermline was a very important religious and pilgrimage centre in medieval times. Through drama and role play, the children establish pilgrimage characters as they prepare to set off. They undertake a walk from Pittencrieff Park via St Catherine's Hospital, through the nave of the church and to St Margaret's shrine. They then explore the abbey and refectory in order to learn how the abbey supported pilgrims and why Dunfermline was such a key place of pilgrimage."

The Medieval Pilgrims activity is available in September for any schools that wish to book. T 0131 668 8610.

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